Stress Related Illness and the Immune System

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Kiecolt Glaser et Al (1984)

Experiment:

- Blood Samples: taken from 75 medical students:

- One month before final exams (acute stress)

- During the exam period (chronic stress)

- NK natural killer cells measured (white blood cells) to measure if cortisol suppresses the immune system

- Questionnaire is measured

Finding:

Nk cell activity was reduced in the high stress condition and the levels were lowest for those who reported higher levels of loneliness. Stress reduces immune function and this is exacerbated by social isolation.

EVALUTATION: volunteer medical students, NK and questionnaire, too vague - acute vs chronic

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